I bought this car new, and planned to keep it for a long time, but unfortunately I totaled the car. Icy roads caused me to not make it around a corner, resulting in the car hitting multiple trees, becoming airborne, and flipping down a 40' embankment. The car landed on its roof and was heavily damaged; I walked away without a scratch.
That being said, I really liked this car. The 5-cylinder engine had plenty of power; the handling was extremely precise. The brakes were smooth and strong; the ride quality was quite good for a small car.
The fuel economy was good, but not as good as I had hoped. My previous vehicle was a 2000 MKIV Jetta 2.0L manual, and this car returned better fuel economy than the MKV Jetta. Also, my current 2012 GTI gets considerably better economy than my Jetta did. Still, low to mid 20 MPG range was the norm in town, and 30+ MPG was possible on the highway. My best MPG was about 35 MPG. However, the Jetta runs on regular fuel, whereas the GTI does not.
The interior of the Jetta was very nice... good quality materials and good fit and finish. So much better than the MKVI Jetta that was introduced in 2011. I loved the small things that the Jetta offered... the little red LED mood lights in the roof, the one-touch up/down windows for all, the front footwell lights, the electric trunk and fuel door releases, the fact that virtually every switch was illuminated at night, including the overhead light switches! The cooled glovebox, the multi-position center armrest, and my favorite feature; the one-tap turn signals.
The truck is very large, and uses the articulating-strut type hinges, not the cheap goosenecks found on most cars (including the MKVI Jetta). The headliner and pillars is made from a nice woven material. The trunk and glovebox are nicely finished.
The audio system that came with the car was basic (single CD and basic display), but actually sounded quite good. I upgraded by installing VW's own Premium VIII color touchscreen unit, which comes with the excellent SD card reader option. The iPod integration that comes with the car is awful. Although it provides a nice spot for the iPod to sit in the center console, it does not charge the iPod, and the track controls are horrible.
I would recommend a MKV Jetta to anyone. The styling is excellent; the car looks and feels like the upscale car it is. I installed an AWE Tuning catback exhaust system to the vehicle which improved the sound, power, and actually helped fuel economy slightly. Most importantly, I can attest this is a very safe vehicle.